This week has been pretty relaxed in comparison to what we’re normally up to. At the beginning of the week, a lot of businesses were closed for the New Year. After being used to getting coffee and byrek every morning and seeing kids all over the place after school, it was a bit of a pace change.

Speaking of language, we continued to have our language classes all week, and they were really fun. It’s such an interesting experience to learn a new language while surrounded by people speaking it. At times it feels as if we’ll never be able to communicate with people, but on other days it’s amazing to see the ways we can talk to and learn from people even with our limited knowledge.

One of my favorite moments recently was with a little girl from the Sunday morning kids’ program. She saw me looking at the nativity set and came over to start playing with the figurines. I took whichever she had, or pointed to another, and asked, “si quhet kjo?” (“what is this called?”). I learned the words for sheep, cow, donkey, and shepherd.

We also got to spend some time in Lezhë helping kids with homework. Surprisingly, my favorite subject to help with was math. I never really liked math growing up, but it’s convenient that math is the same in every language. If I’m being honest, I was never really someone who was super comfortable with kids—but I’ve come to really enjoy being with them, and even look forward to it.

We’re all becoming more familiar with our environment and each other, and it’s been really fun to get to know this place and each other. I’ve been a little homesick this week, but in those moments I remember why I’m here and the God who brought me here. I’ve been learning to listen for His voice, accepting that it might not come in a loud booming way, but may come in a whisper. I’ve found praise and worship in Albanian to be something that makes me feel connected to God and the people here. I love being able to have that communication with God and those around me!

I ask that you would pray against homesickness, for continued team communication, and energy and motivation to serve Christ in new ways every week. Thanks for reading and Zoti bekoftë (God bless)!

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